To Your Health: Exercise & Mortality

To Your Health: Exercise & Mortality

Dr. Alan Safdi, a world-renowned internist and gastroenterologist with encyclopedic knowledge of mind-body wellness and preventative medicine, posts on Telluride Inside… and Out under the banner of “To Your Health.” His blogs feature the most current information in his field: health, wellness and longevity.

This summer, Dr. Alan returns with his popular Live Longer Retreat wellness intensives. The dates so far are July 21 – July 29, 2019 ; Aug. 11 – Aug. 17, 2019; and Sept. 15 – Sept. 21, 2019. For further information, email or go to Safdi’s Telluride Longevity Institute website.

This week, Dr. Alan offers an article he came across in his research titled “Relationship between age of starting exercise and mortality.” The story is a transcript from a recent talk by Neil Skolnik, MD.

An important article came out in JAMA Open Network this last month on the association of exercise and all-cause cardiovascular and even cancer-related mortality across the lifespan. The practice changer here is that even if you did not exercise when you were younger, if you start exercising between 40 and 65 years of age, you can improve your outcome. You can decrease mortality over the subsequent years.

This was a prospective cohort study using data from the National Institute of Health AARP Data and Health Study of over 315,000 individuals. They used self-reported number of hours of “leisure-time physical activity,” or exercise, per week.

They looked at people who started exercising when they were younger, 15-18 years of age, but also people who didn’t start exercising until they were 40-61 years of age. A little over half of the population were men. They grouped exercise trajectories into 3 categories: maintaining a high level of exercise from adolescence through adulthood, not exercising much in adolescence but starting or increasing after 40 years of age, or decreasing exercise from adolescence through adulthood.


In this large cohort of over 300,000 individuals, there were over 70,000 deaths, so we can really rely on the results of this study. What they found was that, compared to individuals who were consistently inactive over the course of their life, maintaining higher amounts of exercise was associated with lower all-cause mortality, a 36% decrease to age-adjusted mortality; lower cardiovascular mortality, a 42% decrease in age-adjusted mortality; and a reduction in cancer-related mortality, a 14% reduction in age-adjusted mortality.

Adults who were not active throughout most of their adult life—and here’s the exciting part—but increased their exercise level later in life (40 to 61 years of age), had a lower all-cause mortality rate, hazard ratio of 0.65, or a 35% decrease in mortality. They had a 43% decrease in cardiovascular mortality, and a 16% decrease in cancer-related mortality.

Dr. Alan Safdi, more:

Dr. Alan Safdi is board-certified in Internal Medicine and in Gastroenterology and is a Fellow of the American College of Gastroenterology. A proven leader in the healthcare arena, he has been featured on the national program, “Medical Crossfire” and authored or co-authored numerous medical articles and abstracts. Safdi has been involved in grant-based and clinical research for 30+ years and is passionate about disease prevention and wellness, not just fixing what has gone wrong. He is an international lecturer on the subjects of wellness, nutrition and gastroenterology.

And back by popular demand, this summer, in partnership with the Peaks’ Spa, Dr. Safdi returns with his three, week-long wellness intensives titled Live Longer Retreat.

Again, using an evidence-based, scientific approach to health and longevity and featuring an experienced staff of medical professionals, personal trainers, Pilates and yoga instructors, dietitians, and chefs, the focus is on your unique wellness profile. Each Live Longer Retreat is one-of-kind in the U.S. Those intensives, limited to only 10 – 15 participants, will include personal consultations, hiking, spinning, yoga, Pilates, talks and demonstrations related to nutrition, cooking classes, and more.

Go here to read a review of the experience by one very satisfied participant.

Feel free to sign up now to participate in a Live Longer Retreat – or call 1-877-448-5416 for further information.

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